David C Cook COVID-19 Response

High School

We Bow Down

Lesson 5 

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Summer 2021

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By: RLD Editorial Team 

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July 04, 2021

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Lesson Focus:

Stand in awe of what God has done.

Bible Basis:

Psalm 98

Materials Needed:

Step 1:

  • Internet access

Summary & Links:

Students will examine what things are capturing their focus each day and consider what they might be overlooking as a result.

Memory Verse:

Ascribe to the LORD the glory due his name; worship the LORD in the splendor of his holiness.
—Psalm 29:2

Step 1:

Students will examine what things are capturing their focus each day and consider what they might be overlooking as a result.

Materials Needed:

  • Internet access
  • What do you think the word awe means? What about awesome? (Students may offer definitions based on something being cool, appreciated, or extraordinary. Make sure your teens know the actual definition. Dictionary.com defines awe as, “a feeling of reverential respect mixed with fear or wonder”; consequently, the literal translation of awesome is to “inspire awe.”)
  • We hear the word awesome a lot; in your experience, does the common vernacular reflect the true meaning of the word?

As of the middle of June, 2021, there were 99.5 million posts on Instagram featuring the hashtag: #awesome. A quick look around the content that’s being tagged reveals that a large number of these posts are related to travel, food, and expensive items.

  • Does a fancy muscle car or a fancy vacation really “inspire a feeling of reverential respect”? Why then are these the things that are labeled as “awesome”? (Answers will vary.)
  • Do you think that the threshold for what is considered “awesome” is decreasing? Why or why not? (Accept all reasonable answers.)

Many analysts believe that one of the primary reasons for the dumbing-down of awesome is this decade’s prolific use of smartphones. New research reveals that the average person unlocks their phones over 80 times each day, accounting for up to five hours of phone usage daily. This is time and effort that had to be pulled from somewhere—time that was once spent looking at things that maybe truly inspired awe.

All around us, really amazing things are occurring but are mostly going unnoticed. From the microscopic to the astronomical, jaw-dropping phenomena are hidden in plain sight.  One such occurrence is the flight of a dragonfly. Let’s take a look. 

Play this clip [0:30].
Slow Motion Dragonflies | Relax With Nature | BBC Earth

Sometimes, we don’t stop and smell the roses (or look for the beauty in something so small). We rush from one task to another never fully appreciating our surroundings. We live in a beautiful world, but it’s easy to miss when our days are so packed full of classes, obligations, and screens.

In this week’s lesson, we’ll look at how we can shift our focus and stand in awe of what God has done.

Additional Resources:
U.S. consumers now spend 5 hours per day on mobile devices

Looking for Steps 2, 3 & 4?

You can find Steps 2 and 3 in your teacher’s guide. To purchase a teacher’s guide, please visit: Bible-in-Life or Echoes.

Step 4:

Materials Needed:

  • None
  • Optional: Students’ smartphones

So far, we’ve talked about worshiping the Lord in everything we do, standing in awe of His creation.

Many times, when we think about admiring what God has created, our minds run to the greatest wonders of the natural world. We may think of the Great Barrier Reef, the Grand Canyon, Victoria Falls, the Northern Lights, or Mount Everest, but awe need not be reserved for earth’s superlatives.

The famous photographer Elliot Erwitt described photography as “an art of observation. It’s about finding something interesting in an ordinary place….” Another quote about photography by Marc Riboud said, “Taking pictures is savoring life intensely, every hundredth of a second.” Ordinary life is teeming with instances of God’s miraculous intentionality, and photography is a great way to capture that.

Using whatever tools are at their disposal, challenge your students to create a photography portfolio this coming week. Instruct them to take at least one photo each day, looking for life’s beautiful moments and capturing them through their pictures. Encourage them to take notes on what they thought was worth savoring about that moment; urge them to spend a few minutes worshiping God through the appreciation of His creation.

If time and the weather permits, take your class outside with their smartphone cameras to hunt for something in nature that makes them worship God as the first photo installment to their weekly portfolio challenge.

Before dismissing your class, remind them that this is an activity designed to strengthen their personal connection with God’s creation and holiness; posting the photos they’ve taken to social media could potentially pull focus away from the true meaning of this action.

Close in prayer, thanking God for giving us such a beautiful world to explore.

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